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George Befeki

Professor Emeritus of Physics George Bekefi, who retired last summer after 38 years of teaching and research, died Aug. 17 after a battle with leukemia. He was 70.

Bekefi was best known for his accomplishments in plasma physics, specifically in the production of high-powered microwave generators. His recent work focused on the production of free-electron lasers, very short wavelength coherent emissions that are used in communications and many other fields.

Bekefi taught several classes, including 8.02 (Physics II) and 8.03 (Physics III), during his tenure. He was "a superb teacher, very warm and humorous," said Physics Depart-ment Head Ernest J. Moniz.

In retiring, Bekefi remarked on his enjoyment "of revealing to hundreds of undergraduates the mysteries of physics and guiding some 50 [graduate students] toward their MS and PhD degrees."